Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Nutrition: brood mare

Contributor(s): Derek Cuddeford, Zoe Davies, David Frape, Deborah Lucas, Katie Williams (nee Lugsden)

Brood mares

  • For the first 9 months of pregnancy mares without foals at foot have the nutrient requirements of maintenance only, according to the NRC.
  • It is important that mineral   Nutrition: minerals  requirements are met as any deficiencies, even in the early stages of pregnancy, can result in developmental problems.
  • Most fetal growth occurs during the last 90 days of gestation and a correct diet is particularly important at this time.
  • Protein   Nutrition: protein  , vitamin   Nutrition: vitamins  and mineral   Nutrition: minerals  levels must be adequate during the last 90 days of gestation.
  • Requirements are rarely met by good quality pasture or grass hays at any stage of the pregnancy in the UK.
  • There are a variety of commercially prepared products produced specifically for breeding stock, including stud cubes and mixes, and low calorie balancers.
  • Stresses, eg lack of adequate pasture, during late pregnancy and early lactation, together with an inadequate supplementary diet, may   →   severe metabolic upset and death.
  • Reduce the energy content, but not protein, vitamins and mineral, for overweight pregnant mares.

Print off the Owner factsheets The pregnant mare - health and well-being  and Nutrition - keeping your horse on top form to give to your clients.

Requirements per kg 90% dry matter diet

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Other mineral requirements

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Requirements per day for 500 kg bodyweight

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Vitamin requirements

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers
  • Recent references fromPubMed.
  • Gee E K et al(2000)Changes in liver copper concentration of Thoroughbred foals from birth to 160 days of age and the effect of prenatal copper supplementation of their dams. Aust Vet J78, 347-353PubMed.
  • Donoghue S, Meacham T N & Kronfeld D S (1992)A conceptual approach to optimal nutrition of brood mares. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract6, 355-372PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Frape D (2004)Equine Nutrition and Feeding.3rd edn. Blackwell Publishing Ltd, Oxford, England. ISBN: 1405105984.


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